The Indian women’s team have performed well in parts on their England tour so far. But whenever all three departments clicked together, it has resulted in a victory, be it the last ODI or the second T20I.
With the last game of the tour remaining, the brigade led by Harmanpreet Kaur need to pull up their socks and get ready for one last battle and try their best to win, not just the T20I leg of the long format series, but also draw level on the points table with the hosts, who as of now have eight points, while the Indian side has six.
Apart from the amazing team effort, another common factor that has been key in all of India’s best performances is Sneh Rana. The all-rounder, having saved the Test with her unbeaten 80 in the second innings in Bristol, came back to partner with skipper Mithali Raj and hit quick runs to see India through in the last ODI. In the second T20I also, it was her cool and calm last over that got India women the much-needed victory.
But in matches, where she wasn’t used properly, it resulted in a thrashing for the Indian team. For instance, in the first T20I, even after bowling just two overs and going for only 14 runs in them, the Railways player was not allowed to bowl her full quota. In that very game, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav, Deepti Sharma and Arundhati Reddy were all taken for plenty and had higher economy rates than the 27-year-old off-break bowler.
Thus, taking a cue from it, neither only should Rana be allowed to bowl her full quota, but should also be promoted to bat up the order, especially in death overs given her hitting abilities.
The second T20I was England Women’s to lose with just 43 required from 38 balls and eight wickets in hand. But the way they panicked at the end to lose by a margin of eight runs was not what Heather Knight and her team are known for.
They lost six wickets in just 37 runs and their lower batters in Katherine Brunt, Sophie Ecclestone and even Sophia Dunkley on that day weren’t able to resurrect the innings. Taking a lesson from that defeat, the English team would look to identify a batter who could play till the end as an anchor and other players would contribute with quickfire runs around her.
Match Number- 3rd T20I
Date and Time: July 14, 2021, 11:00 pm IST, 06:00 pm GMT, 07:00 pm Local
Venue: County Ground, Chelmsford
Broadcast and Live Stream: Sony Sports Network, Sony LIV
In the women T20Is played at the County Ground in Chelmsford, five have resulted in a win for the chasing team while four times the team batting first have managed to defend the total. As far as recent T20s go, which are being played as part of the T20 Blast competition, teams chasing have won three out of the last four completed games.
The matches haven’t been high scoring this season with the average score hanging at about 140. This gives a clear picture of what to expect in terms of assistance to the bowlers. The pitch offers a low scoring thriller and could hence help India Women in a way that they like to defend or chase low totals.
The weather at Chelmsford promises to be ideal for a cricket game with temperatures ranging between 21-19 degrees Celsius from 1900 hrs to 2300 hrs, the entire duration of the game. The skies would be clear and humidity wouldn’t be that high either.
With the current records in mind, the team winning the toss would go for a field first approach.
The England team is highly unlikely to change given that they played the best possible XI on that day. However, if the team would like to go for a change then they can play Anya Shrubsole in place of Freya Davies and since they already have two frontline spinners. Sarah Glenn who didn’t have a good outing with the ball could make way for Tash Ferrant.
Tammy Beaumont, Danielle Wyatt, Natalie Sciver, Heather Knight (c), Amy Ellen Jones (w), Sophia Dunkley, Katherine Brunt, Sophie Ecclestone, Mady Villiers, Anya Shrubsole, Natasha Farrant
Having won the previous game with the same team, India Women wouldn’t look fiddle with the winning combination, hence the same team is expected to start.
Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Harmanpreet Kaur (c), Harleen Deol, Deepti Sharma, Sneh Rana, Richa Ghosh (w), Shikha Pandey, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav, Arundhati Reddy
Tammy Beaumont, Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Natalie Sciver, Amy Ellen Jones(w), Sophia Dunkley, Deepti Sharma, Sneh Rana, Sophie Ecclestone, Shikha Pandey, Poonam Yadav